Norwich can feel proud of their efforts after fine away win

Celebration time for Norwich as Phil Buckland touches down at Cantabrgian. Picture: ANDY MICKLETHWAI

Celebration time for Norwich as Phil Buckland touches down at Cantabrgian. Picture: ANDY MICKLETHWAITE - Credit: Archant

Norwich can be immensely proud of their performance after coming away from third-placed Cantabrigian with an excellent win.

The visitors were on the back foot early on, with James Hayward knocking over a penalty awarded for offside, but they quickly regrouped.

When an attacking move by Cantabrigian broke down Norwich scrum-half Jonny Payne made a break and passed inside to put Rob Micklethwaite in the clear and he duly scored under the posts, with Payne converting.

Five minutes later slick work by the Cantabrigian backs engineered a try for left winger Francois Eve but the conversion was missed. Then the referee again awarded a penalty for offside which James converted and the home side took an 11-7 lead.

Norwich stormed back into Cantabrigians' 22 and their dominant lineout created a catch and drive which resulted in a try for Phil Buckley which Payne converted, taking the score to 11-14 at the interval.

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In the second half each side created periods of pressure and the game was finely balanced until Tom Lloyd was sent to the sin bin for a high tackle. Norwich were still re-organising the side when Jon Perks ran through their defence and put Eve in space to score an unconverted try, putting the home side back into the lead.

Home supporters hadn't finished celebrating when a knock-on soon after the restart resulted in a backs move that enabled Norwich's replacement winger Tom Stanley to score in the corner following a fly-hack ahead. The conversion was missed, but Norwich had regained the lead at 16-19.

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In the exciting last eight minutes of the game a resolute visiting defence held out against a series of spirited attacks from Cantabrigians.

The hosts were awarded a very kickable penalty on the last play but turned down an easy chance to level the score in an attempt to win the game. They came close to doing so, getting the ball over the line, but the referee spotted the knock-on leading to it and called time.

It was an excellent performance throughout from Norwich and they deserve particular praise for their refusal to give up their lead at the end of the game.

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